FIT Europe and EUATC release the full European Language Industry Survey 2020 slidedeck

The annual European Language Industry Survey (ELIS) was initiated in 2013 by EUATC. It is co-organised with ELIA, FIT Europe and Gala, and is supported by the European Masters in Translation Network (EMT) and the European Commission’s LIND group.

The survey examines the expectations, trends, challenges and concerns of the different stakeholders in the language profession. This year, for the first time, the survey was divided into a section directed at language service companies (LSCs) and one directed specifically at independent professionals/freelancers.


The questions for independent professionals, developed by FIT Europe, addressed areas that have long been of concern and interest, for example, client expectations, precarity, long-term financial planning, continuing professional development (CPD) and work-life balance.  

Supplementary COVID-19 survey

As the 2020 survey closed on 15 February, literally days before COVID-19 took hold in Europe, it was decided to conduct two supplementary surveys on the impact of COVID-19, one aimed mainly at LSCs developed by EUATC, and another for independent professionals developed by FIT Europe. The primary motivation for this was that the impact of COVID-19 was likely to overturn the expectations and trends the emerged from the main survey. The FIT Europe supplementary survey contained 5 questions relating to the impact of COVID-19 on business, support available in the different countries and preparedness for financial implosion.

The aim was to provide a snapshot of the situation for translators and interpreters around Europe in the week of 27 March to 3 April. There were 1,036 responses to the COVID-19 survey for independent professionals from 29 European and 18 non-European countries.

Presenting the findings

On 17 April, FIT Europe, represented by Annette Schiller and John O’Shea, together with EUATC and DGT presented and analysed the key findings from the main survey and from the COVID-19 survey to an online audience of about 700 representing all areas of the industry.


As a follow up to that webinar, the full slidedeck contains the complete findings from the main survey as well as the follow-up COVID-19 surveys.

The arrangement of the slides reflects the theme of the questions and not the respondent type. Those slides that are perhaps most relevant to independent professionals are: 11, 16, 38-42, 51, 59-62, 69-77, 83, 84, and 88-90.


FIT Europe has since conducted two more snapshot surveys, COVID-19 Take 2 and COVID-19 Take 3. The findings from the Take 2 survey can be accessed here and here.

The findings from the Take 3 survey will be available next week.

Leave a Reply